The facets of meaningful experiences: An examination of purpose and coherence in meaningful and meaningless events
datasetposted on 2022-01-17, 01:24 authored by William TOVWilliam TOV, NG Weiting, KANG Soon-Hock
Research on meaning has begun to assess the specific facets of meaning in life. Few studies have examined the extent to which these facets distinguish meaning at the level of individual events. In the present study, participants from Singapore and the U.S. wrote about meaningful and meaningless events and rated the extent to which they experienced purpose, coherence, positive and negative implications for self and others, positive affect, and negative affect. In both samples, meaningful and meaningless events differed most in their levels of positive affect, purpose, and positive implications for the self. When entered as predictors of overall event meaningfulness, purpose and positive affect independently predicted meaning. Measures of coherence did not predict the meaningfulness of event with one exception. The extent to which an event offered a new understanding predicted meaning above and beyond purpose and PA. Implications for meaning assessment and theories of meaning are discussed.